Let it not be said that The Giggle was uneventful. For better or for worse, we were just given one of the most bonkers offerings of this show to date, and quite frankly, we’re still processing what just happened!
This is the first multi-Doctor story we’ve had with a future incarnation as the ‘guest’, which meant a lot more Fifteen than anyone expected (at least, for those who behaved and didn’t read the leaks), but it was an absolute treat. Bring on Christmas Day, and the beginning of ‘Season 1’ of New New Who!
Of course, before we get to that, we have to unpack the final episode of NuWho, and there's a tremendous amount to rifle through here…
12. UP - The Toymaker
First up, let’s tackle the big bad of this final special, returning to the show after a 57-year nap, and now in the capable hands of Neil Patrick Harris.
He smashed it.
This is a villain that was so unbelievably suited to the hands of Russell T Davies, and a perfect choice to resurrect for a showrunner who loves to lean into the campy elements of the show – truly a match made in heaven. We weren’t sure on the accent at first, but as soon as it became clear that the character was putting on an accent and switching back-and-forth between them, this leant a bit of otherworldliness that totally worked. NPH definitely does English better than German or French though.
The Toymaker gave us the full spectrum this week, with his flamboyance and humour not detracting from a genuinely menacing and high-stakes villain befitting of such a story. The only crime is that we didn’t get more of him, because he absolutely stole the show every time he was onscreen.
A minor thing, but we also appreciated the subtle acknowledgment of the unfortunate use of a certain slur the last time the character appeared, by giving us a brief scene where he gets called out for similar behaviour this time around. Much better than sweeping it under the rug entirely.
Lastly, we’d be remiss not to mention the fabulous dance number that blindsided us halfway through the episode, which gave us heavy ‘Here Come The Drums’ vibes. It made absolutely no sense, but my my, was it absolutely fabulous, and NPH was clearly having the best day of his life.